Flexibility: High

Social Engagement: High

What’s What: Are you ready to take the next step and devote your energies and experience to fight against heart disease? The American Heart Association does it every day. Here’s your chance to work shoulder-to-shoulder with them and help them make real progress.

Amava Take: If you have had experience with a cardiovascular or neurovascular disease or disorder, as a survivor, family member, caregiver or advocate you could be an integral part of an AHA project and share your insights and feedback as a volunteer Lay Stakeholder. You don’t need formal training as a scientist or doctor! The AHA needs people interested in advancing cardiovascular and/or neurovascular science and healthcare to lend their points of view. In this role, you would assist in the evaluation of the merit of assigned applications relative to peer review criteria. Lay Stakeholders will be asked to comment specifically on the significance and potential impact to the AHA mission. 

Questions an Answers: 

What kinds of people make effective Lay Stakeholders?

Lay Stakeholders are well-spoken, results-oriented individuals with knowledge of the AHA and commitment to its mission, broad-based Association-wide volunteer experience, preferably at a board or leadership level, familiarity with heart disease and stroke, a basic knowledge of scientific method and/or general systematic approaches, the ability to examine research proposals and or scientific manuscripts/guidelines objectively, professional background and experience that would provide a complementary perspective to those provided by clinical and scientific experts. 

What are the requirements to become a Lay Stakeholder? 

Candidates for the role should demonstrate willingness to abide by AHA conflict of interest policies, excellent interpersonal relationship skills, mature judgment and objectivity, ability to work effectively in a group, ability to travel, excellent oral and written communication skills, ability to make oral presentations and proficiency in using email and other internet-based technology.

What is the time commitment and location?

Lay Stakeholders will be asked to participate in one or two peer reviews per year (subject to official invitation by AHA).If the review committee is meeting face-to-face, 1.5 to 3 days may be required for peer review meetings (plus travel time). Less time will be required for a web-based meeting though members are expected to dedicate a full day on the established meeting date. Please note that in-person meetings have been paused due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Projects will be completed virtually for the foreseeable future. Review of applications and preparation of comments prior to meetings takes approximately 5 -10 hours per meeting.

Expenses relating to meeting attendance will be paid by the organization (currently there are no in-person meetings planned). Time commitment varies based on the project, with the shortest normally lasting about six months. Some volunteers who agree to work on scientific and clinical projects may be asked to make longer commitments of about 18-24 months.

What are the other aspects of the commitment? 

  • Weekly conference calls for approximately 6-7 months (about 1 hour per week)
  • Write portions of the project document based on experience and expertise (E.g., patient and family engagement, social factors, shared decision making)
  • Vote on the guideline recommendations
  • Review and sign-off on the entire project document once drafted
  • Contribute as needed for the document

Special Requirements: Work is virtual for the time being and hours are flexible, but AHA asks that you commit to at least 24 months in this capacity. Resumes will be required to ensure that  background is a fit for the position.

Finding a Position: Write to us at editor@amava with questions or send us your resume. We’ll help you get started.